Concealed Guns Now Allowed In Kansas Statehouse

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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW)_ Starting Tuesday, Kansans with concealed carry permits may take their weapons inside the Kansas State Capitol.

Attorney General Derek Schmidt has developed new signs dealing with concealed carry and open carry. The signs are to alert all Kansans as to where weapons may be taken inside public and private buildings.

The Kansas legislature passed the bill allowing guns in more public buildings for persons with concealed carry permits-that means a change for Capitol Police patrolling the statehouse.

"You know, up until today, the only people that were allowed to carry up to his point, concealed, were our representatives," says Capitol Police Officer Crumpler.

Crumpler says visitors only have to show officers their concealed carry license then walk through security like everyone else.

"And their validity of their license, as long as everything is valid and good, we give them back their credentials and they are free to go about the building with their concealed carry weapon," says Crumpler.

Open carry means someone can carry a weapon anywhere as long as it's not concealed. Open carry is permitted on capitol complex grounds and in the parking garage.

The new signs may be confusing for awhile, but for a quick explanation: the sign with a gun and a red line slashed through it bans all weapons in the building. This red octagon sign with writing inside sign means open carry is banned but concealed carry is allowed. If there are no signs it means people with concealed carry permits or people carrying weapons not concealed may be inside.

"I'm not really in favor of it, I'm a gun owner myself. I think people take it too much for granted these days, the weapons. I think the shooting we had yesterday is a result that we are carrying weapons too much," said statehouse visitor, Steve Brennan.

Crumpler assures guests can feel safe inside the Capitol building.

"Everybody who is in the building is going to be kept safe, and there shouldn't be any difference whatsoever," says Crumpler.

Right now the signs are not permanent policy. Attorney General Derek Schmidt's office says the public will have the opportunity to offer comments on the effectiveness of the signs for at least 60 days and there may be a public hearing on their effectiveness.